July 28, 2011 Articles

Causation and Case-Within-the-Case Developments in 2010

Recent cases support the widespread use of the case-within-the-case method to attack proximate cause.

By Erin L. Delatte

Recent case developments confirm the adage that as many legal malpractice defense verdicts are won on causation as on liability. A legal malpractice plaintiff bears the burden of proving every link of the chain connecting the attorney’s breach of duty to the plaintiff’s alleged damages. This year’s cases support the widespread use of the case-within-the-case method to attack proximate cause, to discuss the necessity of expert testimony to prove breach and causation, and to deny the application of the loss-of-chance doctrine to legal malpractice cases.

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